Tuesday, June 19, 2012

White Roses and the Story of My Great-Grandmother's Haunted Bedroom by Texas Flower Artist Nancy Medina

Blue Satin White Roses by Nancy Medina

Oil on Gallery Wrap Canvas

It was definitely time for a change of pace in the studio, so we put the sunflowers in the kitchen, and turned our attention to white roses today in Flower Mound Studio. These roses remind me of a chipped china cup in my great grandmother's kitchen in Palestine, Texas. She lived in a big old two story house all alone, had her own garden out back, and was completely independent, despite having been blind since she was in her 20s. One summer my mother left my sister Kim and I with her for 2 weeks, and I spent most of that time exploring Nanny's upstairs closets, where foot peddle trestle sewing machines, old Montgomery Ward catalogues and countless other treasures were stacked and stowed. 

The most delicious childhood memory of her home was of the Peacock Bedroom upstairs, which she assured us was haunted. It was called the Peacock Bedroom because of the white blanket on the tall squeaky bed. The bed spread had a beautiful row of raised white embroidery in the shape of a peacock. There was a chifferobe in the room filled with clothes and old shoes that smelled of mothballs. At night I could smell the fresh air that came in through the open window, and the crickets would sing me to sleep. I was never afraid in that bedroom, even in the dark and all alone. This house was where my mother spent every summer of her childhood, and she says this was where her heart was, even when she was back home with her parents in St. Louis. I wish I could see the house again, and see my great grandmother, but I learned that years ago the house burned down. I will have to be content with visiting them both in my dreams.

Blue Satin White Roses on the easel....


Tweedles -- that's me said...

The white roses are beautiful. They remind me of some wild roses growing on a hillside by my farm home.

Southern Fried Pugs said...

My grandmother had a similar coverlet except it was a giant rose. The name of that style of bedspread escapes me but I always associate it with the South. And I haven't heard the word chiffarobe in years! I had one as a little girl with a viciously sharp catch that actually tore a hole in my sister's cheek. I wonder what happened to it.
Great story and beautiful piece. I can almost smell the roses, a heady perfume made stronger by the heavy humidity.

CrimsonLeaves said...

I love the name "blue satin white roses" and wonder at its etymology. Anyway, Nancy, thank you so much for sharing your memories. I was imagining the house, your great-grandmother, the Peacock room...So wonderful!

Nancy Medina said...

Thank you ladies! I wish I could remember what the name of those white covers were called, with the white latchhook raised patterns on them. My sisters and I always tried to be first to call dibs on the peacock room when we stayed with Nanny. :)

Southern Fried Pugs said...

I had to come back because I remembered. Chenille!